Get To Know The Man Who Coaches Poor Children - #WATWB

Get To Know The Man Who Coaches Poor Children -  #WATWB

Thirty four years back in 1984 I cleared the prestigious Indian Institutes of Technology - Joint Entrance Examination with a rather low rank of 1782. Those days only two thousand candidates where selected in IIT JEE unlike the 10,000 who get selected nowadays. Those days there were only five IITs in the country.  Securing a rank in IIT JEE meant you could get admission for an engineering degree in one of the five IITs or the Institute of Technology, Banaras Hindu University or IT-BHU which also used the IIT Joint Entrance Examination for admitting students. This institute acquired IIT status only recently in 2014 and became IIT-BHU from IT-BHU.

I could only secure admission in Institute of Technology - BHU as my rank in JEE was not good enough for securing admission in one of the five IITs. Though I found that the intellectual level and caliber of students in IT-BHU was pretty high, the missing "I" in IT-BHU ensured that the students from the other IITs looked down upon us with some degree of contempt. 

Let us now come to the present. The IIT JEE is now a two-tiered examination with JEE-Main being conducted as a screening test by CBSE and then another exam called JEE-Advanced conducted by the IITs. There are sixteen IIT's in the country now. Opening IITs like fish markets in every corner of the country has brought down the general standard of IITs. In addition I am hearing crazy things like plates of vegetarian and non-vegetarian students are being segregated in IIT canteens and numerous other stories which make my blood boil.

The IIT JEE is still as tough an examination today as it was in my days. If you get through this exam it is like getting a certification of your high intellectual caliber. Of course, I have my own  opinion of what it truly certifies but that is besides the point and not relevant to this post. The point I am getting at is, there is an unassuming man named Anand Kumar from Patna who is taking some steps to ensure that the poor and impoverished children of the country who do not have the exposure to get through the IIT JEE also get a chance to study in the coveted Indian Institutes of Technologies.

In 2002 Anand Kumar set up what he called Super-30 when he chose 30 students from the economically impoverished sections of the society and provided them boarding and lodging and coached them for the IIT Joint Entrance Examination. In the first year as many as 18 out of the 30 students he coached got through the prestigious examination and secured admission in the IITs. 

The process of selection to the Super-30 involves a number of factors. There is a written examination and the economic status of the student is also taken into account. Generally children from the lower economic strata who do not have sufficient exposure but are full of potential are given a chance. In 2004, 22 out of 30 students of super 30 qualified in the IIT JEE. In subsequent years, several times all the 30 students of Super 30 coached by Anand got through the exam. The students coached by Anand are generally those who come from poor schools where the standard of education is not very high.

I will just give you some background about Anand himself. He was born in Patna, Bihar to a poor clerk. He studied in a Hindi medium government school where he developed a deep interest in mathematics. During graduation, Anand submitted papers on number theory which were published in the Mathematical Spectrum and the Mathematical Gazette.

Anand secured admission in Cambridge University but could not join because of his poor financial condition. In 2000, Anand was approached by a student who was poor and could not afford the costly coaching classes for IIT JEE. Anand was moved by this and it made him came up with the idea of what has grown today to be the internationally recognized Super 30. I give below the links to the Wikipedia articles on Super 30 and Anand Kumar

Wikipedia Article On Super 30

Read About Anand Kumar

I think it is a great initiative by a man who has himself faced so many obstacles and has lost many an opportunity. People like Anand Kumar are a very rare breed who have the heart and will to strive for those who do not get the opportunity and exposure to climb to the great heights they are capable of. May his tribe live long ! Long live Super 30 !


  1. This is indeed an inspiring story - kudos to Anand Kumar, and best wishes to all he is helping.

  2. This is an amazing story and I've seen this in TV as well sometime back. Kudos to him! :)

  3. These are the guys who make the world go round! Bravo! May their tribe increase!

  4. What an inspirational story. Such an admirable man, to help students in this way. To give them hope. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Truly inspiring article.... All the best wishes to Mr. Anand Kumar for such a selfless service to poor IIT aspirants. God bless ...

  6. I don’t know how should I give you thanks! I am totally stunned by your article. You saved my time. Thanks a million for sharing this article.

  7. Hi Jai - what a wonderful story about an amazing man - how incredibly generous with his time and savings ... I loved reading about him - and his Super 30 programme ... so many children will benefit and then benefit others ... lovely - thanks for sharing with us - cheers Hilary

  8. truly inspiring and humbling to read about the selflessness...

  9. Anand Kumar is a great man to have achieved and to help others find their way too. Thanks for sharing, Jai, and for being part of our WATWB.


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An Introduction To The Blog By Jai